Tuesday, 17 July, 2018

US House approves Puerto Rico relief fund

Melissa Porter | 13 October, 2017, 07:29

White House legislative affairs director Marc Short said on CNN's "The Situation Room" that he did not view Trump's tweets as a "threat" to withdraw aid to Puerto Rico and conceded he did not know why Trump decided to make those statements Thursday morning. "A total lack of accountability say the Governor". Electric and all infrastructure was disaster before hurricanes.

He then went on to propose that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the military and first responders - who he said "have been incredible (under the most hard circumstances)" - can not stay in the USA territory "forever!"

"The president is committed to helping to make sure that we do what is necessary to help to rebuild the island, but there are some elements that pre-existed the hurricane", Marc Short said on CNN.

In the first week after Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico, Trump was roundly criticized for the government's slow response to provide aide.

"The people of Puerto Rico are American citizens and they deserve federal assistance to recover and rebuild", Jennifer Hing, a spokeswoman for House Appropriations Committee chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, said in a statement to Anadolu Agency.

The Environmental Protection Agency, in an email Thursday (Oct 12) to reporters about its relief efforts, notes that it has received reports of people trying to drink potentially risky Superfund water, from wells that were sealed to avoid human exposure to toxins: "There are reports of residents obtaining, or trying to obtain, drinking water from wells at hazardous waste "Superfund" sites in Puerto Rico". And after Trump said Cruz had "been told by the Democrats that you must be nasty to Trump", the mayor wore a black T-shirt featuring one word: "Nasty".

"@POTUS your comments about Puerto Rico are unbecoming of a Commander in Chief they seem more to come from a "Hater in Chief", she tweeted.

"'Puerto Rico survived the Hurricanes, now a financial crisis looms largely of their own making, ' says Sharyl Attkisson", Trump posted.

According to the White House transcript, Pence addressed the people of Puerto Rico when he said, "We are with you, we stand with you, and we will be with you every single day until Puerto Rico is restored bigger and better than ever before".

Puerto Rico's economy ground to a halt in the storm.

The House bill includes a one-time payment of $1.27 billion to help Puerto Rico receive access to the U.S. Disaster Nutrition Program.

Although it was free to play in Thursday's game, Chestnut Academy sold baked goods and water with all proceeds going to the victims of Hurricane Maria.

60 percent of wastewater treatment plants are working on generator power. Puerto Ricans, who are US citizens, are likely to continue to flee to the mainland United States unless conditions improve, with Florida one of their top destinations. In addition to the federal effort, 22 states have responded to calls for aid in Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico has been grappling with a bankruptcy crisis and owes $72 billion to creditors.

Days later, during an October 3 visit to the island, Trump said US relief efforts in Puerto Rico, bankrupt before the storm, had "thrown our budget a little out of whack" and was filmed casually tossing rolls of paper towels into a crowd at a disaster relief center.